Pav Bhaji - The King of Mumbai Street Food

Let me take you through the journey of Pav Bhaji which is the king of Mumbai street food. The best part is that you can prepare it in various styles.


Pav Bhaji is sweet, savoury as well as spicy street food of Mumbai. Any person can fall in love with the taste of Pav Bhaji. You can have it at any time of the day. The look, colour, taste, a dollop of butter on Bhaji and the buttery pav are enough to arise the temptation for having the dish. History and Origin of Pav Bhaji - Being a child, I was always fond of Pav Bhaji, and one fine day I asked my mom, ‘Can you tell me how pav bhaji was invented?’ She was very happy to know that I am taking interest in knowing about things like the history, invention, etc. and want to upgrade my knowledge. So, she started narrating me the story. In the year 1860, the Civil war started in USA which increased the demand for cotton in their country. During those times, India was one of the major suppliers of cotton. Due to the heavy requirement, employees at Bombay cotton exchange had to work late night. This had the worst impact on their personal lives. Their wives used to get annoyed and frustrated with this lifestyle, and as a result, they had to sleep empty stomach. This issue came into notice as there was a downfall in efficiency and productivity of work. Then, finally, a solution was found. The solution was that the street vendors were told to collect the leftover vegetables from the Jesuit Priest, They mixed up all the vegetables and mashed them together which were supposed to be eaten with bread and butter. So, this is how the concept of Pav Bhaji was invented, where Pav means bread and Bhaji means vegetables. But, did you know that Pav Bhaji stalls were spread all-over across the Mumbai city?

Sardar Pav Bhaji stall at Tardeo started in the 60s and is still maintaining its fame. I was excited to know the history and journey of Sardar Pav Bhaji. My mom told me that, ‘the journey of an entrepreneur is not so easy, and have to they go through lots of hardship’. The person’s name was Sardar Ahmed, he was a street hawker, and he used to sell the vegetables, fruits, juices to the workers. He was a very humble person, and he wanted to do something for these workers. He gave a thought on what can be healthier and affordable for these workers who work long hours a day. He took few vegetables like onions, tomatoes, potatoes, etc. and mashed them. This is how he came up with this wonderful dish Bhaji which he used to serve with butter. This concept of Pav Bhaji is still existing and became the finger licking recipe for Mumbaikars. In the beginning, the plate of pav bhaji would cost 60 paise, which now costs Rs 125. How Pav Bhaji becomes the daily intake for consumers - Types and Varieties Of Pav Bhaji This lip-smacking dish is made using healthy vegetables, aromatic spices, and is then garnished with a dollop of butter, few drops of lime, and finely chopped coriander leaves. The Bhaji is then served with hot, butter-dripping Pavs. Pav bhaji is a preferred street food for a reason. Maharashtra can rightly declare to be the birthplace of this cherished dish. Jain Pav Bhaji - Jain Pav Bhaji means, it does not contain any onion and garlic. The traditional Jain Pav Bhaji was prepared using raw bananas was used as the substitute for potatoes and mashed peas. Maximum lovers of Jain Pav Bhaji are in Gujarat and Maharashtra, the western part of India. Khada Pav Bhaji - The traditional Pav Bhaji is made by evenly mashing all the vegetables, but, while making Khada Pav Bhaji, you don’t mash the vegetables. So, while eating the Khada Pav Bhaji, you can see the pieces of the vegetables. Kathiyawadi Pav Bhaji - Kathiawad is in the vicinity of Gujarat which is a part of Saurashtra region. The coastline borders the Gulf of Kutch to the west, the Arabian Sea to the south and the Gulf of Khambhat to the southeast and east.The pav bhaji from this region has some local spices added which gives a completely wonderful taste. Punjabi Pav Bhaji - The word Punjabi food means a whole lot of spices. Punjabi Pav Bhaji is prepared by mixing the various spices and butter floating on it. It is mainly accompanied by a glass of Lassi. Kolhapuri Pav Bhaji - A version of Pav Bhaji wherein red chilli powder is substituted by using Kolhapuri Kanda lasun chutney to make it more spicy. You can call this as the garlicky version of the pav bhaji. Fusion Pav Bhaji - Break the Traditional way and let's be creative - When we go to restaurants and pick up the menu card, we all always come across with basic and traditional pav bhaji. Many of us want to try some new dishes. Let me share the list of creative and innovative Pav Bhaji. Pav Bhaji - Dhokla - Dhoklas are considered as Gujarati famous farsan. We have this farsan with spicy chutney. The new concept which has arisen is Bhaji with Dhokla. Here, You need to take 2 pieces of Khaman Dhokla and place the bhaji between the Dhoklas.Make sure that the bhaji is little dry. The combination tastes good and exciting. You will crave for more after trying this combination. Pav Bhaji Burger - This is an alliance of western and Indian culture. Here, sweet and savoury Pav Bhaji is sandwiched between two pieces of burger or buns, and it is grilled. This is how you get a perfect taste of Pav Bhaji and Burger. I would refer this dish for all foodies irrespective of their ages. Chinese Pav Bhaji - A fusion of Indian and Chinese cooking styles, the Chinese Pav Bhaji is an invigorating snack that everybody will love. Ginger extract, chillies in vinegar and soy sauce come collectively with a medley of veggies and boiled noodles to make a jazzy accompaniment for buttered pav. It has an oriental touch, pretty one of a kind from the regular Pav Bhaji, which has the flavours of onion, garlic, tomatoes and pav bhaji masala. When you want to cook dinner with a modern twist, then this Chinese Pav Bhaji is the best option. All people will genuinely love the distinction. Masala Pav Bhaji - It is a mixture of vegetables like capsicum, potatoes and various spices. Cook it for some time, mash it well. Once prepared, place it on butter Pav and enjoy the spicy Masala Pav Bhaji. Enjoy it with your friends over weekend. Pav Bhaji Pasta - Again a deadly combination of Indian and Italian taste. Cook and mix up all the vegetable along with pasta and other spices. It will take 20 minutes for preparation and 20 minutes for cooking. Foodies who are Health and Diet Conscious - The trend has changed and people’s lifestyle too. Under this stressful world, people want change, and simultaneously they have become health conscious too. They really take extra care about themselves. So if you are a food lover, you should always know how many calories you are consuming and how many calories you need to burn. Keeping in mind the nutrients sources, I have shared below the statics: nutrients wise and ingredients wise which contains each vegetable and spices consumed in Pav Bhaji. Calories 304

Sodium 151mg Total Fat 7g Potassium 86mg Saturated 4g Total Carbs 46g Polyunsaturated 0g Dietary Fiber 4g Monounsaturated 0g Sugars 34g Trans 0g Protein 13g Cholesterol 0g Serving Ingredient Calories 41.67 grams Potatoes 39 21.67 grams Cauliflower 5 21.33 grams Carrot 9 26.67 grams Peas 22C 10.42 grams Green Beans 4 25 grams Onion 10 19.83 grams Green Pepper 4 75.83 grams Tomatoes 14 1/2 tbsp Masala 0 0.43 grams Garam masala 0 0.44 grams Chilli Powder 1 0.52 grams Turmeric 2 0.33 grams Cumin 1 0.333 cup Water 0 1/2 tbsp Butter 51 1/4 grams Salt 0 Pav Bhaji: The Most Popular Vegetarian Recipe In India

We all must agree that Pav Bhaji is one of the most known vegetarian recipes in our country. Here is the recipe to make Pav Bhaji at home. Most importantly, it’s the biggest consumed Mumbai street food. Ingredients for Pav Bhaji: Medium boiled, mashed potatoes- 4 Medium sliced onions- 2 Sliced cauliflower-1/2 cup Shelled, blanched peas- 1 cup Refined oil- 3 tbsp Salt- 3 pinches Pav- 8 Garlic paste- 2 tsp Green beans- 1/4 cup Medium sliced tomatoes- 4 Chopped, deseeded green pepper (capsicum)- 1 Chopped carrot- 1/4 cup Ginger paste- 1/2 tbsp Chopped green chilli- 2 Melted butter- 25 gm Medium lemon wedges- 1 Pav bhaji masala- 2 tsp Garnishing: A handful of chopped coriander leaves Method to prepare Pav Bhaji: 1) Blanch the peas, carrots, cauliflower florets & beans. Also, you could boil them with slight water in pressure cooker. Drain & mash coarsely. Heat oil into a vessel & drop 3/4th quantity of onions. Sauté until it turns light golden. Add garlic-ginger paste and green chillies. Stir-fry for thirty seconds. Add pav bhaji masala & sliced capsicum & stir-fry for one minute. 2) Ensure that you have sliced the tomatoes well. If they have tough skin, then detach the skin and then slice them. Add salt, tomatoes & cook over moderate heat for 3 to 4 minutes, constantly stirring or until oil separates from the masala. Add mashed peas, potatoes, cauliflower & two cups of water. Let it boil & simmer for 10 minutes, mash it using the spoon, until all the veggies are fully mashed & blended. 3) Heat around half-spoon of the butter in a thick-bottom vessel or a tava. Cut the pav horizontally in 2 & pan fry in the butter for 30 seconds, pressing 2 or 3 times or until pav is light brown and crisp. Decorate the bhaji with sliced coriander leaves, butter & serve it hot with pav and sliced onions & lemon wedges. 4) You can also add green chillies and well-sliced onions into the bhaji. If you like to have the bhaji spicier, include an extra tsp of red chilli powder when cooking the bhaji. Also, you can consume this bhaji with paratha or roti or with the plain bread. Recipe 2 - We have learned how to make Pav Bhaji. Similarly, spices also play an important role when preparing Pav Bhaji. Let me tell you how to prepare Pav Bhaji masala. Pav Bhaji Masala wishes no introduction. It is the magical element that makes bhaji so delicious. It lends a spicy flavour, wealthy colour and enticing aroma to any combination of vegetables. Ingredients - 10 whole dry Kashmiri red chillies, broken into pieces 2 tbsp cumin seeds (jeera) 6 cloves (laung / lavang) 1 1/2 tbsp fennel seeds (saunf) 1/4 cup coriander (dhania) seeds 1 tbsp turmeric powder (haldi) 1 stick cinnamon (dalchini) 4 black cardamom (Badi elaichi) 1 tbsp black salt (sanchal) 2 tbsp dried mango powder (amchur) 1 tbsp freshly ground black pepper (kali mirch) Method - Take a bunch of red chillies and let it dry under the sun for 2-3 days. Take all the spices- coriander seeds, Kashmiri dry red chillies, cumin seeds, cloves, fennel seeds, cinnamon in one pan which is non-sticky. You need to dry roast all the spices. Make sure that you roast under medium flame. Roast for about 3 minutes. After 3 minutes, turn off the flame and remove the pan from gas and let it cool completely. After the spices are cooled, take the mixer and put all ingredients in it and grind the spices. Strain the mixture using a sieve. All the spices should be stored in an airtight container to avoid the vacuum. The Pav Bhaji masala is ready. Use it while making Pav Bhaji next time.

Bombay is widely recognized for its avenue dishes like Pav Bhaji, Pani Puri, Misal Pav and lots of extra chats. These dishes are great when you get that evening hunger pangs. These dishes are affordable and also available everywhere. There are like millions of people on the earth who love these food items. I think no one would say that they don‘t like the Mumbai Pav Bhaji. The dish is something which attracts everyone’s interest with an enticing aroma around.


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